MANILA - Employers can defer the payment of holiday pay this Holy Week until the COVID-19 crisis abates, the labor department said Wednesday nearly a month into the lockdown of half the country's population to beat the pandemic.
Additional pay for April 9 to 11 can be postponed "until such time that the present emergency situation has been abated and the normal operations of the establishment is in place," Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello said in an advisory that the national wages commission posted on Facebook.
Businesses that suspended operations during the Luzon quarantine "are exempted from the payment of holiday pay," he added.
Workers were supposed to get 300 percent of their daily rate on April 9 because it will fall on 2 holidays, Maundy Thursday and Day of Valor or Araw ng Kagitingan, the wages commission earlier said.
The quarantine of 50 million people in Luzon until April 30 exempts health workers, emergency frontliners and providers of basic services and goods.